Posted on June 23, 2021 (updated: June 23, 2021)

Environmental groups celebrate adoption of Bill C-12 in House of Commons and call for quick passage through Senate

Parliament of Canada
Photo by Tetyana Kovyrina from Pexels

OTTAWA/TRADITIONAL, UNCEDED TERRITORY OF THE ALGONQUIN ANISHNAABEG PEOPLE – Environmental organizations Climate Action Network-Réseau Action Climat, Ecojustice, Équiterre, David Suzuki Foundation and West Coast Environmental Law Association celebrate the final vote in the House of Commons to adopt the Canadian Net-Zero Emissions Accountability Act (Bill C-12) and ask the Senate to prioritize passage of Bill C-12 before recessing for the summer.

Earlier this month, the House environment committee approved multiple amendments to strengthen the bill. Environmental groups advocated for C-12 to be prioritized and were pleased that four out of five parties voted in favour of the bill yesterday. Nonetheless, it was disappointing not to see support from all parties for the Bill at third reading, as there was for climate accountability legislation in the United Kingdom.

The Senate Committee on Energy, the Environment and Natural Resources also tabled its report yesterday after conducting pre-study of the bill. They noted that the need for a national climate accountability framework in Canada is pressing. Given the approaching summer recess and the potential for a snap election, the Senate must pass Bill C-12 without delay.

In a joint letter sent to Senate leadership on June 23, the groups wrote: “While the bill falls short of the gold standard, we cannot afford further delay in its progress through the Senate and passage into law. The focus now must be on ensuring that Bill C-12 is enacted before Parliament rises for summer, and that outstanding concerns be addressed and accountability measures strengthened through sound implementation of the Act once in force.”

Canada has missed every climate target it has set, and previous attempts at climate accountability legislation have not made it through the legislative process. If enacted, Bill C-12 will provide a foundation that can be built upon to ensure that Canada never misses another climate target.

About:

Canada’s farthest-reaching network of organizations working on climate change and energy issues, Climate Action Network-Réseau Action Climat is a coalition of more than 130 organizations operating from coast to coast to coast. Our membership brings environmental groups together with trade unions, First Nations, social justice, development, health and youth organizations, faith groups and local, grassroots initiatives.

The David Suzuki Foundation is a leading Canadian environmental non-profit organization, founded in 1990. We collaborate with all people in Canada, including government and business, to conserve the environment and find solutions that will create a sustainable Canada through evidence-based research, public engagement and policy work. We operate in English and French, with offices in Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal.

Ecojustice uses the power of the law to defend nature, combat climate change, and fight for a healthy environment. Its strategic, public interest lawsuits and advocacy lead to precedent-setting court decisions and law and policy that deliver lasting solutions to Canada’s most urgent environmental problems. As Canada’s largest environmental law charity, Ecojustice operates offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Ottawa, and Halifax

Équiterre offers concrete solutions to accelerate the transition towards a society in which individuals, organizations and governments make ecological choices that are both healthy and equitable.

West Coast Environmental Law is a non-profit group of environmental lawyers, strategists, and communicators dedicated to safeguarding the environment through law. Working with communities and partners across the country, West Coast aims to transform environmental decision-making and strengthen legal protection for the environment through collaborative legal strategies that bridge Indigenous and Canadian law.

For media inquiries

Vicky Coo, communications lead, Climate Action Network
vickycoo@climateactionnetwork.ca, 613-203-3272

Sean O’Shea, communications specialist, Ecojustice
soshea@ecojustice.ca, 416-368-7533 ext. 523

Anthony Côté Leduc, media relations, Équiterre
acoteleduc@equiterre.org, 514-605-2000

Alexis Stoymenoff, director of communications, West Coast Environmental Law
astoymenoff@wcel.org, 604-684-7378 ext. 228

Theresa Beer, communications specialist, David Suzuki Foundation
tbeer@davidsuzuki.org, 778-874-3396

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